Everyday English 2
Everyday English 2

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Everyday English 2

Session 1: Speaking and listening


Being able to communicate effectively is the most important of all life skills. Whether we are speaking to our boss, chatting to our friends or just popping to the shop to buy a pint of milk, most of us use our speaking and listening skills every day. But have you ever really stopped to think about what makes someone a good communicator?

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Whether at home, at work, or applying for a job-- learning to communicate effectively is a very important life skill. Depending on the situation you're in, what and how you say things will vary a lot.
It's not all about speaking, either. Facial expression and body language are also important parts of communication. As well as eye contact.
So, if you're trying to get the attention of people in a group discussion, for example – or giving a presentation yourself, understanding speaking and listening can really help you to communicate much more successfully.
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In this session, you will explore the differences between formal and informal language, identify positive and negative non-verbal communication and practise your presentation skills.

If you are doing this course to prepare you for either the Functional Skills English Level 2 qualification or the Essential Skills Wales Communication Level 2 qualification, remember that speaking and listening is an important part of both programmes.

For both qualifications, the speaking and listening assessment is split into two parts:

  • A formal discussion: for this, you take part in a timed discussion on a set topic. In the Essential Skills assessment, this is linked to the reading element of the assessment. The discussion is with a minimum of two other people and you are assessed on your ability to communicate information, feelings and opinions, and to ask relevant questions. You are also expected to use appropriate language and non-verbal communication. You use preparatory notes to support your contribution to the discussion.
  • A short talk/presentation: for this, you prepare and present a short talk to a group of at least three other people. The talk can be on a topic of your own choosing. In the Essential Skills assessment, it must include an image or other materials to enhance or aid understanding. Both the structure and delivery of the talk are assessed, together with its suitability for the intended audience.

Did you know if you study a paid part-time course with the OU in Wales you could get up to £4,500* to help with your living costs?

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*Eligibility rules apply for financial support.